US Navy at Trump rally not disciplined after probe
- Donald Trump called in Lance Cpl. Hunter Clark on stage at a “Save America” âârally on September 25th.
- Clark claimed to be “the guy who pulled the baby over the wall” at the Kabul airport.
- The Marine Corps opened an investigation after the rally and concluded that he would not be punished.
The United States Marine Corps has decided not to punish a duty man who spoke on stage at a Donald Trump rally, according to internal Navy communications obtained by Insider via a request under the Freedom of Information Act.
Cpl. Hunter Clark appeared onstage at a “Save America” âârally in Perry, Ga. On September 25, where he introduced himself and claimed to be “the guy who pulled the baby over the top. the wall”. It was a reference to an August 19 video showing an officer pulling a baby over a wall near Kabul airport during the US withdrawal from Afghanistan.
On September 30, the US Marine Corps said it was investigating whether Clark had violated Department of Defense guidelines prohibiting the US military from speaking “in front of a partisan political rally.”
But on October 6, two senior commanders of the United States Marine Corps signed an internal investigation into Clark that concluded that his conduct did not violate guidelines, according to documents obtained.
“While [Clark] identified himself at the instigation of former President Trump, [and] in doing so, he spoke at a political event, he did not do so in a way that violates applicable references, âwrote Colonel Eric Cloutier, commander of the 24th Marine Regiment, according to the documents. .
“I do not believe that a reasonable person would consider [Clark’s] words to constitute a speech during a political event.
Surprised by mom at a Trump rally
During the investigation, according to communications, Clark told senior officers he left Marine Corps Lejeune base camp to spend the weekend of September 25 at his home. Once there, Clark said his mother told him she surprised him by taking him to meet “important” people.
Clark called his platoon sergeant on Sept. 24 to relay what his mother had told him, but made no mention of who he was scheduled to meet, according to the documents. In response, Clark’s platoon sergeant told him to shave, have his hair cut, and behave like a Marine should.
On September 25, Clark was taken by his mother to the “Save America” âârally in Perry. According to the documents, Clark told investigators he had no idea where he was going and that once there, he had no idea he was going to be called on stage.
Clark said he didn’t want to disrespect Trump and decline his offer to take the stage, the documents show.
After being introduced by Trump as a “handsome guy,” Clark gave a brief speech in which he identified himself as Lance Cpl. Hunter Clark from Warner Robins, Ga. And said, âI’m the guy who pulled the baby over the wall, and it’s definitely probably one of the greatest things I’ve ever done in my entire life. life, âhe said.
“I just want to thank all the support from all of you. It really means a lot, and I’m happy to be home today. Thank you.”
Clark’s command told Insider last month that Clark was not the Marine seen in the August 19 video in Kabul. But Clark’s mother, Peggy Clark, later told CNN that her son stood behind the Marine who transported the baby to safety, and that the baby was returned to him afterwards. The Marine Corps did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
Clark had found support in GOP Rep. Michael Waltz, a former Green Beret, who called on the Marine Corps in a October 7 letter to abandon his investigation.
In the letter, Waltz said the Marine Corps should determine whether “the military unevenly applies justice to servicemen who hold conservative beliefs.”